Yard Sales season is in full swing! Yard sales offer a great way to free your home of unwanted clutter while pulling in some unexpected profit. That said, to host a winning garage sale, you need to have a plan beyond opening up the garage and hoping people show up. Here are some key tips to ensure your next yard sale is a success.
Get the word out. Advertising is critical to the effectiveness of your yard sale. Go beyond putting up a few photocopied flyers in the general area. Begin with social media! Post about your garage sale on your Facebook profile. Check and see if your local area has any community pages and post there as well! Start promoting your garage sale at least a couple weeks out, and definitely list your yard sale in online advertising venues such as Craigslists.com, garagesalehunter.com and yardsalesearch.com.
There’s strength in numbers. Why stop at having your own yard sale when a neighborhood full of items will draw far more customers? A month or two out, tell your neighbors that you’re hosting a community garage sale, and that you’ll do all the advertising and organizing. All they have to do is put their items in their driveway and rake in the business. Consider putting a banner up at the entrance of your neighborhood, as well. You’ll be surprised at the number of bargain hunters a neighborhood sale will attract.
Timing is key. Pick a weekend morning in a season that has mild weather and that doesn’t conflict with holidays or sports schedules, especially youth sports. Have the event start early to attract the big bargain hunters, but don’t let it go beyond noon.
Get the green light. Ensure that your garage sale conforms to any housing association rules or local government code. This can be particularly important when it comes to signage. The last thing you want is to spend your profits on a fine. Check your local City Hall for more information about what is required in your area.
Consider relocating. If you live in a remote or hard-to-get to area, and you don’t expect to get many customers, opt for organizing a parking lot rummage sale at your local house of worship, school or community center. Like a neighborhood yard sale, these can be extremely successful events.
Organize your inventory. Start taking stock of all the items you want to unload, and begin organizing them into boxes or bags, so that when you do have the sale you will be able to quickly set up. As you sort through your items, double-check any items that might have good value on eBay and similar sites so that you don’t accidentally give away a treasure for chump change.
Price is everything. Remember your customers are extreme bargain hunters, so price your inventory to move. Also clearly mark your prices using color-coded stickers to help you easily calculate prices and strike deals. If the item has some decent value, keep the hagglers in mind when you set your price, but remember the ultimate goal is to clear out your clutter.
Once the big day comes, roll out your items, put the most attractive items in the front, grab a cup of coffee, and have some fun — keep the cash box handy!